Jonah 2:6 I went down to the bottoms of the mountains; the earth with her bars was about me for ever: yet hast thou brought up my life from corruption, O LORD my God.
7 When my soul fainted within me I remembered the LORD: and my prayer came in unto thee, into thine holy temple.
8 They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy.
9 But I will sacrifice unto thee with the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay that that I have vowed. Salvation is of the LORD.
10 And the LORD spake unto the fish, and it vomited out Jonah upon the dry land.
Jonah was directed by God to write this book. Jonah wrote about his adventures while in the water and in the belly of the fish. As we noted yesterday, Jonah could not see what was going on during his three days and nights in the belly of this fish. He had quite the journey as we read here. God told him of where he all went.
Jonah also noted that God had protected him from corruption while he was in the belly of that fish. Jonah’s body did not get consumed by that fish. Jonah is a type of Jesus Christ here in that Jesus Christ was three days and three nights in the heart of the earth and His body did not suffer decay.
Jonah addressed the Lord here as “LORD my God.”
The word “LORD” speaks of Jehovah God. This is the self existent God who acts independently of His creation. He is not hindered in any way by His creation. The devil cannot overrule the true God. All of creation is dependent upon the LORD. He does not need us, but we certainly need Him. Our world is in a mess right now because the majority of people want to live as if there is no God.
The word “God” in our text speaks of the plurality of the godhead. The godhead consists of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. Jonah is being taught here of Who it is that he has been rebelling against. It is an amazing thing that a man with this knowledge would even think that he could run away from God. Jonah is not alone in this deluded way of thinking.
It is important for mankind to understand Who the true God is. We have had mandates thrown at us over the past 2+ years that are in defiance of the true God. Far too many people have given in to these mandates, rather than understanding that God is still on His throne.
Those who have been watching what has been taking place in Ontario over the past few days will know that the union forced the government to back away from its plan to force a contract on a certain segment of the educational workers. The union has boasted of the importance of working together with the various unions and that they were able to force the government to change course due to their “solidarity”.
Man is quite impressed with numbers. We believe we need to listen if the numbers are high enough. Christians get caught up in this false narrative as well. Different religious groups have tried to band together over the past 2+ years to try to fight the government. What we have seemingly forgotten is that God is the majority all by Himself. Godly people in the Bible did not concern themselves with large numbers of people to succeed. Those who did, were shown that they were wrong in doing so.
Gideon had an army of 32,000 men in his preparation to attack the Midianites. God told him that army was far too big. God said He would not get the glory with such a large army. God reduced the number of that army to 300 men. Those 300 men went against the Midianites with lanterns and torches. They overthrew that army and gained a great victory for the nation of Israel at that time. It was clear that God had given them the victory.
Our world today needs to know how big the true God is. True Christians need to be reminded of how big the true God is. True Christians do not always appear to be winning in the eyes of the ungodly. However, when true Christians honour God, He will be glorified before the ungodly.
Jonah needed to know this in his day. He hated the Ninevites. He did not want to go and preach the message that God had for them. He knew the power of God and He did not want the Ninevites to be spared and saved. He was not told to go to Nineveh with an army. He was told to go by himself and preach a particular message. In our text, Jonah acknowledged the greatness of God, even though he was not keen on glorifying Him as he should have.
In verse 7 Jonah admitted that his soul had fainted. He had given up the fight temporarily. In that state, he remembered the LORD. He prayed to the true God and the LORD heard him.
In verse 8 he was describing himself. He had observed lying vanities. He had assumed he could defy God and get away with it. God was merciful to him, but not in the way he would have wanted. God could have killed him and found some other person to go and preach to the Ninevites. Instead, He provided a storm to get Jonah’s attention. Then He provided a fish to swallow Jonah and bring him to his proper destination. Jonah paid a fare to run away from God. God brought him back at no cost.
In verse 9 Jonah vowed to sacrifice unto the LORD with the voice of thanksgiving. He would pay his vow. He understood that salvation is of the LORD. No one else could do what God had done here for Jonah. This was a unique account that has caused many to scoff at its truthfulness. Those who reject this account, prove that they do not know the true God.
In verse 10 we see that after Jonah made his confession to God, the LORD caused this fish to vomit Jonah up on the dry land. This would have been quite the event as well. Jonah was picked up by this fish in the midst of a raging storm. He was dropped off by the same fish on dry land. He would need to wash himself off and fix his clothes somewhat, but he received much more than he was worthy of.
God had a plan, and Jonah needed to get on board with God’s plan. He needed to understand that there was no point in him trying to avoid God’s command again. He needed to prepare for the task that God gave him.
Those that are saved need to understand that God saves us for a purpose. He does not save us just so that we can have “fire insurance.” He saves us to serve Him. We need to understand that He is the LORD God. He has already declared the truth. He has already told us what our message must be. There is a judgment coming and God does not want anyone to be caught unprepared for that judgment. God wants all people to repent toward Him and be saved by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. We need to be willing to tell those that God sends our way, the truth. We are not in charge of their response. We are called to obey God in giving His message faithfully and obediently. We do not need to change the message. We do not need to compromise the message. We need to give the message faithfully so that others can respond as needed.
We may not see large numbers turning to the LORD. That is God’s business. He has called us to be faithful to Him. He has told us to exalt Him. Jonah needed to learn some important lessons about God. God gave us this short book so that we could learn some important lessons about God as well.